A/N – Unlike my other fics, this one has summaries for each chapter. I know exactly how long this story will be and what will happen in each chapter. I hope you like it. I actually have two Betas editing this, so grammar will be good to go! Enjoy.
Summary – House faked a fatal illness in attempt to receive a permanent high. In anger, everyone turns the other cheek when they see House two seconds away from crashing and burning. But with each passing day it seems that more and more symptoms seems to put into question just how much of the lie was actually true.
Disclaimer – I own nothing except this pathetic excuse of a story.
Wilson stopped talking to the nurse when he saw House walk into the hospital; beads of sweat were pouring down his face. His eyebrows raised in worry as he watched his friend from a distance. It was clear House wasn't even paying attention to anything happening around him as his tongue stuck out in intense concentration. The limp was much more predominant today than it had been the last few days, which worried Wilson even more. He debated whether or not to find his friend a wheel chair as he watched House's face contort in pain.
"Tell me when those tests are in Jenna. Thanks," Wilson said walking away before he could finish the sentence.
It didn't take long to step in front of House, his arms crossed across his chest. House looked up, snatching the sunglasses from his eyes to lock eyes with Wilson. House's stare was deadly, but Wilson didn't even flinch. House attempted to side step Wilson, but Wilson easily slid in front of him once more.
"You want to move?" House hissed.
"You look like shit. Do you have a hangover?" Wilson asked. "Or did you run out of Vicodin this morning?"
"None of those, smartass," House grumbled.
Wilson stepped aside to let House pass, but followed beside his friend as he made his way to the elevator.
"House, is your leg hurting?" Wilson asked worriedly.
House rolled his eyes. He continued walking parting the crowd with his cane, much to everyone's annoyance. Wilson followed behind House, mumbling a quick apology to everyone who was talking in protest. They walked into the elevator, and House pressed the 'Close Button' before half of the people waiting for elevators could walk on.
"My leg always hurts remember Jimmy? It's called an infarction," House quipped.
"House, you know what I mean," Wilson resisted the urge to roll his eyes.
"I'm fine," House muttered.
Wilson opened his mouth to speak, but the elevator door swooshed open and House stepped out hurriedly. Wilson basically tripped out of the elevator immediately apologizing to the poor man he tripped over.
It had been four days since everyone found out about the cancer stunt House pulled. Within those four days, House had managed to come to work with a hang over. Cuddy's patience was wearing thin now. The day before she had stomped into House's office her ears burning with anger. She had no sympathy for the man as she flipped every closed shade in the office open, smiling when she heard a grown come from the lump on the couch.
She threatened to suspend House if he came to work with a hang over one more time before going into a long screaming rant about how selfish the man can be. Secretly Wilson was praying to the Gods that House was telling the truth about not having a hang over, but his whole appearance said otherwise.
"Are you sure?" Wilson asked gently.
"You've been hanging out with Cameron too much. The niceness is rubbing off on you," House stated.
House stood in front of the conference room looking expectantly at Wilson, who responded with a confused look. "Why aren't you going in?"
"You first, they won't shoot if you're protecting me," House reasoned.
This time Wilson really rolled his eyes but he did open the door with House right behind him. Chase looked up from his crossword puzzle. When he spotted House, he shook his head returning to his puzzle.
"You're hung over," Foreman stated, plopping down in his chair.
"You have clinic duty," House ordered.
"No I don't," Foreman said confused. "I did my hours already."
"You didn't hear? It's two for the price of one week," House said.
Foreman rolled his eyes, giving House a cold stare. "I'm not doing your clinic hours because you're hung over."
"I'm not hung over, man," House walked over to the table.
"House, lunch later," Wilson said.
He gave a small nod in acknowledgement of the ducklings before slipping out of the room. Though House would have never admitted it, the past few days had been awkward to say the least. Cameron always looks at him with pity radiating off her, Chase wouldn't even smile at any of his jokes and Foreman was being a bigger ass than he already was.
The doors to the conference room swung open as the last duckling made her way in.
"You're late," House observed.
Cameron gave him a once over before sighing loudly. "You're hung over."
House growled out in frustration. "I'm not hung over. For the last time just in case you," he points to Chase who looks up from his cross word puzzle confused. "…decide to state an observation that isn't true, let me get it through each of your heads. I'm not hung over!"
The ducklings exchanged glances worriedly and House slammed his hand down on the table in anger. Chase jumped from his chair sending it backwards in surprise. "And stop looking at each other as if I'm not in here." House added.
"Are you sure you're fine?" Chase asked grabbing his chair from the floor.
House fought back the urge to smack Chase over the head with his cane. "I said I'm not hung over." House said avoiding the question. "Why are you late?" his focus shifted towards Cameron who was currently fishing out something from her briefcase.
"I was talking to Cuddy," Cameron started.
Cameron rolled her eyes. She threw a file in front of House and handed Foreman and Chase theirs. "We have a case."
House flipped open the folder skimming over the tests. When he found everything to be boring he scoffed loudly throwing the file in the center of the table. "No…Wilson has a case. It's leukemia. The end. Nothing interesting."
"No she doesn't. Biopsy didn't show anything wrong," Cameron pointed out.
"Well, let's see," House said. He attempted to reach for the file he threw, but when he found it was out of reach he snatched the one from Chase's hands instead. "There's your problem right there. The E.R. did the tests."
"That was mine," Chase pouted.
"And now it's mine. Sorry pretty boy. You can't always get what you want," House said gleefully.
"But you can right?" Cameron asked darkly, effectively wiping the grin off House's face.
"Go do the tests again. Why? Chase, come on," House said waving his hands towards himself. "Come on, ask me why."
"Why?" Chase asked dryly.
"Because apparently to Cameron, I always get what I want," House mocked.
Everyone in the room rolled their eyes, tired of their boss's antics. When it was clear to House that no one was moving out of their respective chairs he exaggeratedly shook his head around. "Oh no, don't get up from your seats, let me do those tests for you all."
The younger doctors took the hint and reluctantly stood from their chairs. "Once you guys are done come back for the differential." House said shooing them away. "Foreman, clinic."
"What?" Foreman asked indecorously.
"Don't tell me it takes three intelligent doctors to work one simple machine," House stated.
Foreman shook his head angrily. "You're unbelievable. You're just too hung over to deal with patients and you punish me for it." He yanked the door open and stalked out before House could say anything.
Chase glanced over at House watching the emotions quickly play out on his face before it quickly became neutral once more. It was funny how his eyes always gave him away. Always. He had learned to read people quite well, growing up with a bunch of fake people surrounding him he learned from a young age where exactly the truth laid. Another thing he learned quite young was evidence of a hang over. He had lived through many in his lifetime, his mom's last few years of life practically one big hangover after another. And House was definitely not hung over.
"What are you still doing here?" House practically demanded.
"You're not hung over," Chase simply stated. "But you're not fine either."
Once all three ducklings were out of sight House gave a loud sigh throwing his head upwards in what looked dangerously like a prayer. He fished around for a familiar bottle eyeing the pills greedily as he shook three out. He reached for the coffee Foreman had left on the table taking one big gulp as he swallowed the pills along with it. He sat at the table grabbing for Chase's crossword as he waited for the medicine to take affect.
Fifteen minutes and one completed crossword puzzle later House decided to attempt limping into his office. It was a 400 feet walk from the corner of the table towards his chair behind the desk, but for some reason lately it's been feeling a lot farther. The alcohol was great at numbing the pain, mixed with Vicodin the pain was almost bearable. But Cuddy's threat sounded more like a promise, and despite what most people thought, House knew Cuddy would go through with it if push came to shove.
House groaned loudly as he attempted to stand up, only to practically collapse back into the chair. He thanked whatever God there may be out there that someone had decided to close the blinds. He bit back a whimper as he sucked in his breath and tried once more to stand. In excruciating pain, House managed stumbling into the sofa in his office before being completely drained of all of his energy.
His eyelids drooped down heavily and sleep was fact approaching when the phone rang waking him from his half slumber.
"Hello?" he barked out, angry that someone chased away his much needed sleep so quickly.
"Dr. House? Greg. It's Dr. Bilritz," Dr. Bilritz introduced himself.
"So?" House asked expectantly drumming his fingers on the desk.
House heard a small sigh from the other side and he gulped down nervously restraining himself from dropping the phone all together when he was met with silence. "I can't read your mind you know." House said his sarcasm a releasing form of the fear.
"You should come in Greg…"
"That bad huh?" House felt like someone had just punched him in the gut.
"The sooner the better Greg," Dr. Bilritz stated.
House scrunched his eyebrows together, squeezing his eyes shut; his hand pinched the bridge of his nose in attempt to re-center himself. So many thoughts were running through his head, each disappearing as quickly as they appeared. He sucked in as much air as he could and gave a loud sigh nodding his head.
"Ok. I can be there in one hour," House resigned.
"Um…" Dr. Bilritz started. "It's not required, but I highly recommend you bring someone close to you."
House's mind focused quickly on the statement. He quickly ran through the list of likely candidates, which at this time was one, but even Wilson seemed fed up with him. He frowned. "It's ok. I don't want to disturb anyone," House said sadly.
On the other end Dr. Bilritz could distinguish the sadness easily as House's tone of voice dropped to the point of a near whisper. Dr. Bilritz knew that the appointment would be the start of a few very bad months, and he knew this sort of news shouldn't be taken lightly. He's known people who damn near killed themselves on the way home from his office. And it was all people who came alone.
"I don't think they'll mind. But I won't push. I'll see you at eleven," Dr. Bilritz said hanging up the phone.
House dropped the phone onto the receiver. He knew that he had just swallowed some pills forty five minutes ago, but after that conversation he didn't really care as he carelessly threw two more into the back of his mouth.
House sat deep in thought unsure of how much time had passed. He had decided he would wait for the ducklings to come back and they could do the differential themselves. If he left before they came back, knowing them, they would have devised a search and rescue team consisting of Cuddy, Wilson, and them. The last thing House needed was all five of them looking for him, calling him non stop until he finally threw the phone at the wall.
Cameron walked in with his male ducklings following suit. It amused him slightly that the biggest push over of the three seemed to always be leading the other two. Chase and Foreman apparently had already started the differential arguing their way in.
"That's great. You guys are doing an excellent job!" House said enthusiastically.
He limped past the three towards the exit, his briefcase and jacket in his hand.
"Where are you going?" Chase poked.
"Australia to get me another wombat," House called behind his back.
Cameron, Foreman, and Chase watched their boss retreat towards the elevators. Foreman threw his hands in the air flinging the file on the table. "Is it just me or is House acting weirder than his usual self…and that says a lot if we're talking about House."
Chase shrugged. "Beats me. I think we should do another M.R.I." Chase stated changing the subject. "As for House., it wasn't a hangover…" Chase trailed off. He added silently in his head, "I just wish I knew what it was."
A/N: What else can I say but review and I'll write more. Don't like it? Tell me so I can make adjustments.